East Jerusalem man beaten in another suspected hate crime

22:00 Sep 5 2012 Katamon neighborhood, Jerusalem

East Jerusalem man beaten in another suspected hate crime
Ibrahim Abu-Ta'ah, the man wounded in the attack, in the hospital in Jerusalem. Photo by Emil Salman

Jewish youths allegedly break Arab man's leg after he and a friend give a Jewish colleague a lift home.

By Oz Rosenberg for Haaretz

Jerusalem police are investigating a suspected hate crime in the capital on Wednesday night, in which a young Arab man was allegedly attacked by Jewish youths.

The incident comes several weeks after dozens of Jewish youths attacked several young Arab men in Jerusalem's Zion Square on August 17, in what eyewitnesses described at the time as "a lynch."

The attack Wednesday night occurred in Jerusalem's southern Katamon neighborhood, when Ibrahim Abu-Ta'ah, 28, a resident of Wadi Joz in East Jerusalem, and another man were dropping off a female coworker after a night

According to Abu-Ta'ah, the two men agreed to drop the woman off at her apartment after she told them she drank too much.

"She asked for help, so we decided to help her out," he told Haaretz. "I sat in the back and he drove. We arrived at her home in Katamon and she got out of the car, but couldn't stand."

According to Abu-Ta'ah, a number of young men in their late teens and early twenties were sitting on the other side of the street. When they saw the woman getting out, they approached the car.

"They asked: What's going on here? Something like that," said Abu-Ta'ah. "We told them that everything's fine and then she said: Ibrahim, leave them be. That was it. The minute they heard my name, they immediately started hitting. The driver tried to separate [us], but couldn't."

At that point, says Abu-Ta'ah, he fell on the ground and one of the attackers began hitting him in the leg with a metal rod, breaking his left leg in two different places.

Abu-Ta'ah was taken to Shaarei Tzedek hospital, while his attackers fled, according to police. A short time later, police arrived at the hospital and opened an investigation into the incident.

On Thursday morning, Abu-Ta'ah's coworkers from the Mamilla Hotel visited him in the hospital. According to his coworkers, Abu-Ta'ah has worked at the hotel for several years and is considered a good worker.

It is not yet clear when he will be released from the hospital.
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